Ireland may face new elections as the deputy prime minister refuses to resign


  Ireland Frances Fitzgerald Deputy Prime Minister
The Prime Minister of Ireland (Tanaiste) Frances Fitzgerald speaks
the media in Government buildings in Dublin, Ireland, on May 8,

REUTERS / Clodagh

  • Calls were made to the French Deputy Prime Minister
    Fitzgerald to quit smoking after the publication of the documents on her
    the disputed handling of a police whistleblower.
  • The Irish opposition party will move a motion of no
    confidence in Fitzgerald on Tuesday if he does not
    give up.
  • If the motion is not carried out, Ireland can be forced
    in a quick election.

DUBLIN (Reuters) – Ireland was on the verge of a quick election in
Monday after the opposition party supports the minority
government said the refusal of the deputy prime minister to resign
force the country to the polls next month.

The political crisis that deepened dramatically late on Monday
has left the two main parties in the country with less than 24 hours
to avoid general elections in a dispute that casts a shadow
on a Brexit key summit next month.

Ireland will play an important role in the meeting, telling the EU leaders
if you think that there has been enough progress in the
future of the border between the EU members Ireland and the British
province of Northern Ireland.

The pressure on Deputy Prime Minister Frances Fitzgerald to
The Fine Gael party of Varadkar was held the following Monday at the
publication of new documents on his controversial handling of a
complainant of the police who alleged corruption in force.

Fianna Fail, whose support Varadkar requires opposition
banks to keep its government running, has said it will move
a motion of distrust in Fitzgerald at 2000 GMT on Tuesday
unless she retires, a position that hardened on Monday.

"I think the Tanaiste (vice premier) should recognize
that unless she stays aside, she's going to force this
country in a choice that nobody wants, that nobody needs and is
not in the interests of the country, "said Fianna Fail MP Jim.
O & # 39; Callaghan told the national RTE station.

"I do not see any other method out of this".

A compromise seemed possible earlier in the day when senior
members of both parties adopted a more conciliatory tone, but the
the momentum changed instantaneously at the time of the publication of the new documents.

Fitzgerald said last week that he did not remember receiving a
email in May 2015 that details an attempt to discredit a police
complainant whose allegations of widespread misconduct in the
The force cost his predecessor his job as Minister of Justice.

Correspondence published on Monday showed Fitzgerald also
she received two more emails about the strategy in July 2015, but she
resisted calls from all parties to resign, saying that a
A court directed by a judge must judge his conduct in January.

A spokesman for Varadkar, who will meet with the leader of Fianna Fail
Micheal Martin again on Tuesday morning in an attempt to avoid the
election, said the government was backed by Fitzgerald.

However, some members of Fine Gael who spoke under the condition of
Anonymity was livid, and local media reported that several
Party ministers in private said she should resign.

The headline on the cover of the Irish Examiner on Tuesday
The newspaper said: "The ministers abandon Fitzgerald as the pressure increases."

"Totally irresponsible"

While an opinion poll on Saturday gave Fine Gael a one-point lead
about Fianna Fail and suggested another minority government as the
most likely result, professor of politics at the University of Dublin
Eoin O'Malley said Monday's events would also hurt them.

"Fine Gael would go to the elections where they are seen"
be the belligerent party, probably seen as the one
caused it … Could it be a career ending choice for the
loser, "said O & # 39; Malley, adding that a choice was inevitable
Unless Fitzgerald abandons him.

The crisis broke out at a particularly sensitive point in the
Brexit speaks.

Minister of Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney, who continued to support
Fitzgerald reiterated on Monday that there had not been enough progress
done on the border issue and had the full support of
all member states on the side of the EU negotiation.

"We are in the process in the context of the Brexit negotiations of
ensuring that we influence what will be historic
decisions for this country … The last thing we need at this moment is
an election in the middle of all that, "he told RTE.

The limit is one of the three subjects that Brussels wants to resolve in general terms
before deciding whether to move the Brexit conversations to a second
phase on trade, as Britain wants, and the Irish crisis
stabilized the pound sterling on Monday, after it published its largest weekly
increase in more than one month.

"The next two months are crucial for the future of
Ireland, "said Kevin O & # 39; Rourke, professor of Economic History
at the University of Oxford, who has written extensively on
The role of Ireland in the Brexit talks.

"Causing an election at this time would be completely irresponsible."

Edition of Catherine Evans and Cynthia Osterman

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